Monday, August 30, 2010

Coca-Cola promotes drink with 'swastika' robots

A Coca-Cola promotion in Hong Kong featuring a robot adorned with 'swastikas' has been condemned.

Rabbi Yakkov Kermaier, of Ohel Leah Synagogue, says it is probably an honest mistake, but he's called toy sets featuring the "Robocon" characters unacceptable.

One character, the robot-like "Robowaru," has two swastikas on its chest and can be bought in the UK for around £2.60 with any purchase of six bottles of Coke.

The figurines stand on small plastic pedestals with Coca-Cola logos on them.

"It's not simply a politically incorrect symbol," Rabbi Kermaier said. "It's an emblem that represents the wholesale slaughter of six million Jews."

Rabbi Kermaier acknowledged the Nazi swastika can easily be confused with Buddhist swastikas that are common in Asia. The two symbols are close to being reverse images of one another, with the arms pointing in opposite directions.

Coca-Cola says the figurines were made according to the original Robowaru design, but a spokeswoman declined any other immediate comment.

Animation International, which sells rights for Robocon and worked with Coca-Cola on the toys, says the symbols were designed by the creator and "did not have anything to do with any organisation or religion."

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Swastika Laundry

For some reason the thought of the Swastika Laundry came into my mind the other day.
For those unaware of this particular slice of Irish material culture the Swastika Laundry was a venerable institution in Dublin, founded in 1912. It operated from Shelbourne Road in Dublin 4 and remained in business until the late 1960s. I remember vividly the cream and brown coloured labels they used to tag their deliveries and the electric vans that they were delivered in. Now, seeing as this would have been 1967 or 8 it must have been just prior to their eventual demise.
And quite a sight the labels and vans were too, emblazoned with that most remarkable of symbols, the…er…swastika. The photograph below is available on the Dublin City Council website, and depicts the livery of the company on a van used in the series “Caught in a Free State”. I certainly don’t remember the vans as being red, so perhaps this was a previous livery that the company used (or perhaps they overdid the look to make it more Nazi-like – but even so the Swastika remained the symbol of the company).

According to an Irish Times report from some years ago the Laundry changed it’s name in 1939 to Swastika Laundry (1912), perhaps in an effort to preempt a successful German invasion of launderers fired up on National Socialism, and ready to orient the Swastika in the opposite direction.
Because it is strange, but true, to consider that the Swastika laundry used the Swastika in it’s original configuration.
Even more strange is the thought that the brick chimney at Shelbourne Road was also decorated with a Swastika and the name of the company up until the late 1960s. Irish Eagle has a photograph which I hope I can get a scan of of just that location.
So what was it about? The logo was introduced at a time well before it’s association with National Socialism. It was a symbol of good luck, originating in India. It was configured facing left to right which is the correct Indian orientation.
Yet it’s hard not to believe, if only judging from the way in which the van above, which would date from the post-War period, is decorated with the Swastika set within a white roundel with two horizontal bars on either side and set against a red field in an almost exact emulation of the Nazi symbol, that the most unpleasant connotations of the symbolism were being – at best – parodied.
So here we have it. Ireland’s capital city, graced with laundry vans plying their trade hither and yon decorated in arguably the most reviled political symbol of human history.
In some respects it speaks of an innocence regarding the power of visual symbolism. But it is difficult to judge at this remove the true motivation behind it’s use. Was it a sense that the Swastika Laundry had it first and therefore it had some ‘ownership’ of the image? It certainly tends to indicate an insularity as to the significations of the Swastika, and perhaps within a culture that reified the written and spoken word over the visual this isn’t quite so surprising.
And it raises interesting and troubling questions regarding the nature of other imagery that has political connotations.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Man Woman

Here goes this Canadian artist ManWoman on a spiritual mission to put the swastika into its correct context (no, no, not as tattoos covering your body!). I salute him for it.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Swastika Crop Circle Is World's Worst Corn Maze

Well, this is embarrassing for the Bavarian town of Aßling: Someone trampled a swastika the size of a tennis court into a cornfield there. Now everyone who flies over think they're neo-Nazis. Unless they think alien neo-Nazis did it?
Swastikas are illegal in Germany and punishable with up to three years in jail, so police are investigating. According to The Daily Mail, "The swastika is so perfectly aligned that authorities believe they are dealing with hard-core neo-Nazis, rather than drunken yobs." Only hard-core fascists can walk in straight lines? That isn't a reference to goose stepping, is it? [Daily Mail]
Thanks to Dan Shoup for the tip!

Monday, August 23, 2010

baby dictators

Artist Nina Maria Kleivan produced a series of photographs of her infant daughter as dictators for a project on the nature of evil. Unsurprisingly, a bunch of people got upset about it.


Sunday, August 22, 2010

"No Al Fascismo!" Bush/Hitler Sign in Cuba 2003

Cuban billboard comparing Bush to Hitler. I thought the whole anti-Hitler trope was motivated largely by Communists using their #1 bogeyman as a constant specter for political motivation, but the American right, or what calls itself right has compared Obama to Hitler over & over again, using the concept of "socialism" as the connective tissue between Obama & Der Fuehrer. As we say, Bush & Obama are no Hitler, on any level imaginable, outside of being public figures. I do have theories about how the servile nationalism & servile born-again Christianism tend towards a Communist feeling coming from the right, & most of their leaders are former Trotskyites, possibly constructing the world's largest dialectical conflict in the USA in order to bring about a Communist revolution (maybe?), but either way, who knows what the hell is going on?

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Secret Swastika: Elk's Carnival Button

Long Beach Elks carnival pin. This is from well before WWII & the Nazi association with the swastika. Funny coincidence that this button features "888" as well.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Hitler Cat

This is probably the best Hitler cat i've seen so far.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Hitler reacts to the bed intruder

You knew it had to be done. Now someone just needs to autotune this and mash it up with the marching band version and the internet will be complete.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Hitler & Fidel Ginger Bread Men

DSC08962, originally uploaded by meemalee.

I suggest you make these for your friends this Christmas-time.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Heil Hibbler

I know nothing about this book, but here are the American and Italian covers and DON'T YOU WANT TO READ IT?!?!?

Monday, August 9, 2010

Saturday, August 7, 2010

To Be Or Not To Be

Yes, it's a rerun, but it's the weekend & this basically sums up what this blog is about.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Hitler Slang

From the Urban Dictionary
Hitler's Drug. A slang term used mainly in the UK as a reference to crystal methamphetamine
he was strung out on hitler's drug before we finally decided to go over and top him

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Hitler Slang

From the "Urban Dictionary"...
Hitler has a roastbeef sandwich. A woman that has shaved a landing strip shaved on her pubic area.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Hitler sees a double rainbow

Mashup of two great internet memes (Double Rainbow and Hitler Is Upset) plus bonus Insane Clown Posse reference.

Thank you, TechCrunch.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Chewbacca on a squirrel fighting Nazis

Nothing else needs to be said, really.

Thanks to the fine folks at Geekologie for the heads up!